Ann Arbor City Council http://wemu.org en Ann Arbor Council Member Surveying Community On Park Options http://wemu.org/post/ann-arbor-council-member-surveying-community-park-options <p>The city of Ann Arbor is moving ahead with plans for a 12-thousand square foot park on the Library Lot, and one city council member wants to know what the community's envisions there.</p><p></p><p></p> Wed, 23 Apr 2014 20:14:57 +0000 Bob Eccles 44828 at http://wemu.org Ann Arbor Council Member Surveying Community On Park Options Three Candidates Seeking To Be Ypsilanti's Next Mayor http://wemu.org/post/three-candidates-seeking-be-ypsilantis-next-mayor <p>The Ypsilanti Mayoral race has become a little more crowded. &nbsp;</p><p> Tue, 22 Apr 2014 20:46:54 +0000 Bob Eccles 44780 at http://wemu.org Three Candidates Seeking To Be Ypsilanti's Next Mayor University Of Michigan Class Led By Ann Arbor Mayor Hosting Forum Of Candidates To Be Next Mayor http://wemu.org/post/university-michigan-class-led-ann-arbor-mayor-hosting-forum-candidates-be-next-mayor <div>The 4 Ann Arbor City Council members seeking Mayor John Hieftje's job will participate in a forum in his <strong><a href="http://www.fordschool.umich.edu/" target="_blank">Ford School of Public Policy</a></strong> class Wednesday. &nbsp;The forum set to begin at 1 in the afternoon in Weill Hall will be open to the public. &nbsp;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Hieftje says he doesn't know exactly what the students will be asking <strong><a href="http://www.sabrabriere.org/Sabra%20Briere%20for%20Mayor.php" target="_blank">Sabra Briere</a></strong>, <strong><a href="https://www.facebook.com/SallyHartPetersen" target="_blank">Sally Hart Petersen</a></strong>, <strong><a href="http://www.kunselmanforcouncil.com/" target="_blank">Stephen Kunselman</a></strong>, and <strong><a href="http://www.taylorforannarbor.com/" target="_blank">Christopher Taylor</a></strong>.</div><p> Tue, 15 Apr 2014 21:14:07 +0000 Andrew Cluley 44430 at http://wemu.org University Of Michigan Class Led By Ann Arbor Mayor Hosting Forum Of Candidates To Be Next Mayor Library Green Supporters Hope For Progress On Park After City Council Sets Size http://wemu.org/post/library-green-supporters-hope-progress-park-after-city-council-sets-size <p>Members of the <em><strong><a href="http://a2centralpark.org/" target="_blank">Library Green Conservancy</a></strong></em> are hopeful Ann Arbor City Council actions will help people work together to develop a park above the city’s underground parking structure.&nbsp; Last month council approved 65-hundred to 12-thousand square feet to be used as a park, but that’s now been revised to approximately 12-thousand square feet.</p><p>Library Green Conservancy member Will Hathaway thinks everyone wants the same goal, a quality park above the underground parking structure.</p><p> Wed, 09 Apr 2014 02:47:41 +0000 Andrew Cluley 44103 at http://wemu.org Library Green Supporters Hope For Progress On Park After City Council Sets Size Ann Arbor City Council To Consider Resolution Urging State Drop Appeals To Same-Sex Marriage Ruling http://wemu.org/post/ann-arbor-city-council-consider-resolution-urging-state-drop-appeals-same-sex-marriage-ruling <p>Ann Arbor City Council is set to ask state officials to drop appeals to the court ruling that briefly allowed same-sex marriages to take place.&nbsp; Council tonight will consider a resolution urging Governor Rick Snyder and Attorney General Bill Schuette to suspend efforts to contest Judge Bernard Friedman’s ruling. &nbsp;</p><p> Mon, 07 Apr 2014 04:07:05 +0000 Andrew Cluley 43989 at http://wemu.org Ann Arbor City Council To Consider Resolution Urging State Drop Appeals To Same-Sex Marriage Ruling Ann Arbor Y Lot Sale Closes http://wemu.org/post/ann-arbor-y-lot-sale-closes <p>While most attention was being paid to President Barack Obama visiting Ann Arbor Wednesday, an important sale was completed.&nbsp; Dennis Dahlmann the owner of the Campus Inn and the Bell Tower Hotel completed the purchase of the former Y-M-C-A lot on South Fifth Avenue.&nbsp;</p><p>City Administrator Steve Powers thinks the sale is a positive in two ways.</p><p> Thu, 03 Apr 2014 04:46:21 +0000 Andrew Cluley 43830 at http://wemu.org Ann Arbor Y Lot Sale Closes Ann Arbor City Council Races Starting To Take Shape http://wemu.org/post/ann-arbor-city-council-races-starting-take-shape <p>The potential number of contested Ann Arbor City Council primaries continues to grow.&nbsp; While only incumbent first ward city council member Sumi Kailasapathy is officially set to appear on the August Democratic Primary ballot now, eight other people have pulled petitions.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></p><p></p><p> Mon, 31 Mar 2014 04:32:04 +0000 Andrew Cluley 43636 at http://wemu.org Ann Arbor City Council Races Starting To Take Shape Ann Arbor Takes Steps Towards Determining Future of Land Above Underground Parking Structure http://wemu.org/post/ann-arbor-takes-steps-towards-determining-future-land-above-underground-parking-structure <div>Ann Arbor City Council has approved using between 6500 square feet to 12,000 square feet of the land above the underground parking structure for an urban park.</div><p> Tue, 18 Mar 2014 20:32:19 +0000 Andrew Cluley 43030 at http://wemu.org Ann Arbor Takes Steps Towards Determining Future of Land Above Underground Parking Structure Ann Arbor City Council May Have Resolved Debate Over Public Art Program http://wemu.org/post/ann-arbor-city-council-may-have-resolved-debate-over-public-art-program <p>Ann Arbor will use general fund money to help the public art program transition to a new funding model, but over $940,000 in old percent for art funds are being returned to their original sources.&nbsp; That’s the result of three resolutions passed by city council Monday night to hopefully end the long debate over the program.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p></p><p> Tue, 04 Mar 2014 05:04:20 +0000 Andrew Cluley 42295 at http://wemu.org Ann Arbor City Council May Have Resolved Debate Over Public Art Program Ann Arbor City Council to Consider Resolution Outlining Specific Park Location on Library Lot http://wemu.org/post/ann-arbor-city-council-consider-resolution-outlining-specific-park-location-library-lot <p>Monday Ann Arbor City Council will consider a resolution that would designate about 10-thousand square feet of the surface lot on top of the Library Lane parking garage as the site of a future park.&nbsp; City officials have long stated a portion of the area will become park space, but this resolution would nail down the specific location.&nbsp;</p><p> Fri, 28 Feb 2014 06:51:10 +0000 Andrew Cluley 42171 at http://wemu.org Ann Arbor City Council to Consider Resolution Outlining Specific Park Location on Library Lot Ann Arbor Not Buying Edwards Brothers Property http://wemu.org/post/ann-arbor-not-buying-edwards-brothers-property <p>The University of Michigan can go ahead with plans to buy the Edwards Brothers property on State Street for nearly 13 million dollars.&nbsp; Ann Arbor City Council voted six to five Monday night against using the right of first refusal to match the university’s offer. &nbsp;</p><p> Tue, 25 Feb 2014 06:20:10 +0000 Andrew Cluley 42016 at http://wemu.org Ann Arbor Not Buying Edwards Brothers Property Ann Arbor City Council Expected to Decide Tonight if the City Will Buy the Edwards Brothers Property http://wemu.org/post/ann-arbor-city-council-expected-decide-tonight-if-city-will-buy-edwards-brothers-property <div>A decision is expected Monday night as Ann Arbor officials debate whether they should buy a State Street Property or have it permanently removed from the tax rolls. &nbsp;City Council is holding a special meeting to consider using a right of first refusal to buy the Edwards Brothers property. &nbsp;</div><p> Mon, 24 Feb 2014 05:24:07 +0000 Andrew Cluley 41963 at http://wemu.org Ann Arbor City Council Expected to Decide Tonight if the City Will Buy the Edwards Brothers Property Debate Continues Over Ann Arbor's Public Art Program http://wemu.org/post/debate-continues-over-ann-arbors-public-art-program <p>Ann Arbor City Council remains conflicted on the city’s public art program.&nbsp; Council Tuesday night voted ten to nothing for an ordinance amendment that allows them to return old percent for art funds to their original source.&nbsp; Two resolutions to actually do this however were postponed.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p> Wed, 19 Feb 2014 08:08:06 +0000 Andrew Cluley 41737 at http://wemu.org Ann Arbor City Council Likely to Decide Fate of Edwards Brothers Property Monday http://wemu.org/post/ann-arbor-city-council-likely-decide-fate-edwards-brothers-property-monday <div>With the deadline to use a right of first refusal to buy the Edwards Brothers Property on State Street about a week away, Ann Arbor City Council will hold a special meeting on the issue Monday. &nbsp;</div><p> Wed, 19 Feb 2014 07:50:45 +0000 Andrew Cluley 41736 at http://wemu.org Ann Arbor City Council to Discuss Public Art, Edwards Brothers Property http://wemu.org/post/ann-arbor-city-council-discuss-public-art-edwards-brothers-property <div>Public art and the future of the Edwards Brothers property on State Street again take center stage at Tuesday night's Ann Arbor City Council meeting. &nbsp;</div><p> Tue, 18 Feb 2014 07:59:19 +0000 Andrew Cluley 41681 at http://wemu.org Ann Arbor Likely Buying More Road Salt to Get Through This Winter http://wemu.org/post/ann-arbor-likely-buying-more-road-salt-get-through-winter <div>Communities across the nation are facing shortages of road salt thanks to this year's harsh winter weather. &nbsp;Ann Arbor isn't in as bad a situation as many communities but the city is looking at buying more salt.</div><p> Mon, 17 Feb 2014 22:00:41 +0000 Andrew Cluley 41678 at http://wemu.org Ann Arbor City Council Kicks-off 2015 Budget Talks http://wemu.org/post/ann-arbor-city-council-kicks-2015-budget-talks <div>Ann Arbor service area leaders have shared their requests for budget changes with City Council. &nbsp;Changes discussed Monday night include adding three police officers, two additional fire-fighters, and $80,000 for transitioning the public art program to a new model. &nbsp;</div><p></p><p></p><p> Tue, 11 Feb 2014 05:45:19 +0000 Andrew Cluley 41387 at http://wemu.org Ann Arbor's Suspended Footing Drain Disconnect Program Gets Mixed Reviews http://wemu.org/post/ann-arbors-suspended-footing-drain-disconnect-program-gets-mixed-reviews <p>Ann Arbor officials are reviewing the city’s footing drain disconnection program and trying to determine what if anything is needed to avoid future sewer back-ups during heavy rains.</p><p> Fri, 07 Feb 2014 08:44:39 +0000 Andrew Cluley 41218 at http://wemu.org Ann Arbor's Suspended Footing Drain Disconnect Program Gets Mixed Reviews Ann Arbor Public Art Funding Clawback Closes In, Administrator Contract Rejected http://wemu.org/post/ann-arbor-public-art-funding-clawback-closes-administrator-contract-rejected <p>The battle over the future of <a href="http://wemu.org/post/plans-change-funding-public-art-ann-arbor-move-forward">public art</a> in Ann Arbor continues, with City Council approving the first reading of an ordinance amendment to allow them to return up to $840,000 to other departments.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">A six month extension of Public Art Administrator Aaron </span>Seagraves<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> contract was then rejected.</span></p><p>Council member Jack Eaton expects to bring the contract back up for a vote after final approval of the amendment to the public art ordinance to allow old "Percent for Art" funds to be returned.&nbsp; Eaton says he's sorry for Seagraves but democracy is sometimes messy.</p><p><br />Council member Jane Lumm wants proposed Art Projects at Argo Cascades, the Stadium Bridges, and the Kingsley Rain Garden completed.&nbsp; However she thinks a clean break needs to be made between the old program and one where the city partners with a non-profit organization.</p><p><br />Chair of the Ann Arbor Public Art Commission Bob Miller says a change would be good but it appears city council is holding public art administrator Aaron Seagraves hostage over the funding debate.<br /><br />Mayor John Hieftje is disappointed with council's vote on the administrator, and fears they may lose him even if the contract extension is approved in two weeks.</p><p><em>Earlier WEMU coverage of the Public Art Funding issues can be found here:</em></p><ul><li><a href="http://wemu.org/post/plans-change-funding-public-art-ann-arbor-move-forward"><strong>Plans to Change Funding for Public Art in Ann Arbor Move Forward</strong></a></li><li><strong><a href="http://wemu.org/post/public-input-sought-public-art-project-new-ann-arbor-rain-garden"><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Public Input Sought For Public Art Project At New Ann Arbor Rain Garden</span></a></strong></li></ul><p> Tue, 04 Feb 2014 09:28:59 +0000 Andrew Cluley 41060 at http://wemu.org Ann Arbor Public Art Funding Clawback Closes In, Administrator Contract Rejected Ann Arbor City Council Delays Decision on Buying Edwards Brothers Property http://wemu.org/post/ann-arbor-city-council-delays-decision-buying-edwards-brothers-property <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Ann Arbor City Council will take another two weeks before deciding if they want to purchase the Edwards Brothers property on State Street.&nbsp;</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The city is considering exercising a right of first refusal to stop the University of Michigan from buying the land.&nbsp;</span></p><p>Mayor John Hieftje doesn't think the recent experience with the former YMCA property will have much influence on this State Street parcel.&nbsp; He says that's because downtown property is in great demand while Edwards Brothers is well south of downtown.<br />&nbsp;&nbsp;<br />Ann Arbor would have to match U-M's $12.8 million purchase price for the property.&nbsp;</p><p><strong>Map of the Edwards Brothers property is here:</strong></p><p><iframe frameborder="0" height="450" src="https://www.google.com/maps/embed?pb=!1m18!1m12!1m3!1d2953.289331751762!2d-83.74028269999994!3d42.25099345000002!2m3!1f0!2f0!3f0!3m2!1i1024!2i768!4f13.1!3m3!1m2!1s0x883cafb8f46b5d9f%3A0x25a7dd2f5e715670!2sEdwards+Brothers+Malloy%2C+South+State+Street%2C+Ann+Arbor%2C+MI!5e0!3m2!1sen!2sus!4v1391524638508" style="border:0" width="600"></iframe></p><p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">City Council last night also postponed action on a first reading of a proposed smoking ban for city parks, bus stops, and entrances to city buildings.&nbsp;&nbsp; The delay is so council members can get feedback from some of the organizations that would be impacted by the proposal.</span></p><p> Tue, 04 Feb 2014 09:19:22 +0000 Andrew Cluley 41059 at http://wemu.org Ann Arbor City Council Delays Decision on Buying Edwards Brothers Property Ann Arbor City Council to Consider Public Art, Edwards Brothers Property Monday http://wemu.org/post/ann-arbor-city-council-consider-public-art-edwards-brothers-property-monday <p></p><p>Ann Arbor may spend nearly $13 million in the hopes of ultimately keeping a State Street property on the tax rolls.&nbsp; City Council Monday will consider a resolution to use their right of first refusal to purchase the Edwards Brothers property instead of it being sold to the University of Michigan.&nbsp;</p><p>Another pair of items on the agenda will have a big impact on the future of public art in the city.&nbsp; Council will consider the first reading of an ordinance amendment to allow uncommitted percent for art funds return to their source.&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; Several council members have pushed for this move in the past, but others say the money is needed as the Public Art Commission looks to move to a new funding model relying on donations.</p><p></p><p>A six month contract extension for Public Art Administrator Aaron Seagraves was postponed two weeks ago and will be considered again.&nbsp; The delay was designed to have his contract considered at the same time the funding issue would be debated.</p><p> Fri, 31 Jan 2014 23:36:30 +0000 Andrew Cluley 40951 at http://wemu.org Ann Arbor City Council to Consider Public Art, Edwards Brothers Property Monday Ann Arbor City Council Likely Revisiting Crosswalk Ordinance http://wemu.org/post/ann-arbor-city-council-likely-revisiting-crosswalk-ordinance <p>Ann Arbor City Council soon may be once more looking at revisions to the city's crosswalk ordinance.&nbsp;</p><p>Council member Stephen Kunselman says another proposed amendment is likely.&nbsp; He adds that the new proposal will be based on language used by Mayor John Hieftje in his veto of the amendment council passed late last year.&nbsp; Kunselman says the mayor mentioning motorists need to stop if they can do so safely is a change.<br /><br />Hiefjte says the comment about motorists stopping if they can safely do so is nothing new.&nbsp; He says pedestrians remain safer if they don't have to step into the road to get motorists to stop.&nbsp;</p><p>The city also has a new task force looking at a wide variety of pedestrian safety issues including the crosswalk ordinance.</p><p> Mon, 27 Jan 2014 05:18:22 +0000 Andrew Cluley 40695 at http://wemu.org Ann Arbor City Council Likely Revisiting Crosswalk Ordinance Ann Arbor City Council Gives Approval to Move Forward With Downtown Zoning Changes http://wemu.org/post/ann-arbor-city-council-gives-approval-move-forward-downtown-zoning-changes <p>Ann Arbor City Council has passed a resolution asking the planning commission to move forward with some zoning changes on the edge of downtown.&nbsp;</p><p>Council unanimously passed the resolution Tuesday night after asking the planning commission to also make suggestions on possible zoning changes for other downtown areas.&nbsp;</p><p>Council member Sabra Briere says a lot of hard work remains on what core design guidelines should be considered for developers to be eligible to build larger projects.<br /><br />Briere says the request for planning commission to review areas such as South University, Thayer, and Ann is in response to concerns raised by the community that the initial review was too limited.<br />She says the consultant that worked on the project and the planning commission noted this desire by the community to expand the scope of the project, but the planning commission's final recommendation was limited to the original council request.<br /> Wed, 22 Jan 2014 08:14:55 +0000 Andrew Cluley 40484 at http://wemu.org 14 Story Apartment Project for Church Street Approved by Ann Arbor City Council http://wemu.org/post/14-story-apartment-project-church-street-approved-ann-arbor-city-council <p>Ann Arbor City Council has approved the site plan and development agreement for an apartment building at 624 Church Street.&nbsp; The proposal is for a 14 story apartment building built partially over the Pizza House Restaurant.&nbsp; The plan calls for 232 bedrooms in 123 units.&nbsp;</p><p>The project has been given positive reviews from the city’s Design Review Board but parking issues led to a lengthy conversation at the council table.&nbsp; The concerns centered around having spaces reserved in the Forest Avenue parking structure for the next 15 years, and three five year extensions to have spaces somewhere in the city’s parking system.&nbsp;</p><p>Council members say the city’s payment in lieu of parking program needs to be reviewed, as well as the requirement for parking at downtown developments.&nbsp;</p><p>The developers of the project hope to begin work in the spring with a targeted occupancy date in August of 2015.</p><p> Wed, 22 Jan 2014 04:53:59 +0000 Andrew Cluley 40481 at http://wemu.org Julie Grand Running For Ann Arbor City Council Again http://wemu.org/post/julie-grand-running-ann-arbor-city-council-again <p>The former chair of the Ann Arbor Park Advisory Commission is once more seeking a seat on City Council.&nbsp;</p><p>Julie Grand has announced she will run for the third ward seat Council member Christopher Taylor is opting not to try to keep as he instead runs for mayor.&nbsp; Grand says she learned some lessons from her narrow defeat to Council member Stephen Kunselman in last year's democratic primary.&nbsp; She says however her philosophy remains the same.<br /><br />Grand says she is still running to try to make a direct impact on the quality of life in Ann Arbor.&nbsp; She says the city needs leaders who use data, best practices, and community engagement to make decisions on issues while also working on constituent services.</p><p> Thu, 16 Jan 2014 08:17:23 +0000 Andrew Cluley 40273 at http://wemu.org